Starry-eyed Ogilvy acquires dollars 8m entertainment firm

NEW YORK: Ogilvy became the most recent PR firm to go Hollywood last week, acquiring dollars 8 million entertainment shop Baker/Winokur/Ryder (B/W/R) in a rumored dollars 12 million cash-only transaction.

NEW YORK: Ogilvy became the most recent PR firm to go Hollywood last week, acquiring dollars 8 million entertainment shop Baker/Winokur/Ryder (B/W/R) in a rumored dollars 12 million cash-only transaction.

NEW YORK: Ogilvy became the most recent PR firm to go Hollywood

last week, acquiring dollars 8 million entertainment shop

Baker/Winokur/Ryder (B/W/R) in a rumored dollars 12 million cash-only

transaction.



The deal, which had been expected for several weeks, follows

McCann-Erickson’s purchase of PMK and talent agency Creative Artists

Agency taking a stake in Shepardson Stern + Kaminsky.



But what may be most significant is what it means for the other agencies

vigorously pursuing entertainment firms, some of which will inevitably

be left without a dance partner. ’Most traditional agencies didn’t build

their own capabilities in this area,’ said Ogilvy CEO Bob Seltzer, who

estimated that five big-name firms are shopping for an agency of B/W/R’s

status.



Founded in 1979, B/W/R is known for its glittering roster of

celebrities, including Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio. The firm boasts

a new media arm and clients ranging from Kodak to Playboy.



The deal fills several voids for both parties. For Ogilvy, adding B/W/R

lends credibility to what was previously a lightly regarded

entertainment practice. For B/W/R, the deal ups its access to IR and

other resources, and allows the firm to extend work for clients like

Disney. ’Before, we only had a segmented role,’ co-founder Larry Winokur

said.



The most visible upshot of the deal may come via the pairing of B/W/R

celebrities with Ogilvy pharmaceutical, government health education and

hi-tech clients. For instance, it’s not difficult to imagine B/W/R

client Michael J. Fox, currently undergoing treatment for Parkinson’s

Disease, working with a healthcare client that produces Parkinson’s

therapies.



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